Hystiocytic Sarcoma

Not Lymphoma.

Histiocytic sarcomas are malignant (cancerous) soft tissue sarcoma tumors that arise from histiocytic cells (e.g. macrophages and dendritic cells) which are a part of the immune system.

The prognosis for pets diagnosed with localized histiocytic sarcomas of the skin or subcutis (layer under the skin) is not known. The prognosis for dogs with localized histiocytic sarcoma on internal organs such as the spleen is poor with a median survival time of 1 month and 0%-20% of diagnosed dogs surviving 1 year.

Very few cats get this type of cancer. No one knows anything. Except it’s not lymphoma.

We gave her steroids. We went to visit last night but could not bring her home. We’re expecting a call to tell us how much another pill would be. And then we play the waiting game some more.

She still knows us. She purred the entire time she sat on our laps, but that’s pretty much all she did. She was pretty yellow, and pretty tired after all the procedures they went through yesterday.


10 years ago I was living in a tiny house with my older sister and her new kitten Bella. 10 years ago I met my husband. He brought me home from a date and we were standing just inside the doorway saying good night. Bella jumped up on the back of a chair and then onto Shelby’s shoulder. She nuzzled him and then jumped off.


I took a shower and wrapped my hair in the bath towel. I piled the towel high on my head and began the laborious process of cleaning ears and moisturizing face when I was joined in the bathroom by Bella. She jumped up on the toilet and then onto the counter. She made her way up onto my shoulder before eventually reaching her ultimate goal and settling like a lioness on top of the towel on my head.


3 years ago, Bella was living in New Orleans with a growing family. They were about to be homeless for the summer as building of their new home wasn’t complete. The places they were staying would only accommodate one pet. Bella and the dog weren’t getting along. They had been trying to re-home her for a while. We kept declining because of the plants but on a visit earlier in the year, Shelby and Bella had a “discussion” and we agreed to take her in until they were able to move into their new home. A month into it, it became evident that Shelby and the cat would be inseparable. About a month after that, we agreed to take her for good if they were still looking for a good home for her.


I was sitting on the couch one day, I can’t remember if I was crafting or playing on the iPad. Bella jumped up on the ottoman, gave a little squeak, took a few tentative steps toward my outstretched feet before leaping into my lap and settling there. She licked my wrist and then buried her head in my hand and fell asleep.


Her love of boxes. Her specialty set-up in the downstairs hall closet. Her food bowl by the couch. Her litter box with brand new litter catching mat. Her favorite hiding place under the bed. Her thundershirt. Her treats. Her micro-fleece toys, the only ones she’ll play with. Her need to drink water directly from the tap. The way she would sit on the back of a chair and drape her tail and an arm around your shoulders. Her squeaks.


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